Government passes reforms to strengthen consumer building protection

Monday May 2 2016

Amendments to the Building Act passed through Parliament earlier this month, introducing a number of changes to the VBA's powers and functions. VBA CEO Prue Digby welcomed the changes, which deliver on the Government's commitment to increase protection from domestic building malpractice.

"Overall, the regulated industry strives to do the right thing," said Ms Digby. "It's in everyone's interest that regulation  works as well as it can. Consumers want the confidence of knowing what to expect when they engage in building work, and that they'll be protected if things go wrong. Practitioners value the integrity and reputation of their professions. They want clarity on how to comply with relevant laws, and to know that 'cowboys' in their industry will be dealt with appropriately".

The VBA will hold a series of industry meetings and workshops to discuss implementation. The amendments include transfer of registration and discipline functions from the Building Practitioners Board to the VBA, and substantial changes to some of these functions, including renewable registrations and the introduction of a "show cause" process for disciplinary proceedings.

"Government consulted with industry and consumers when developing the changes to the law," said Ms Digby, "and the VBA is committed to following that through to consultation about our plans for implementation. The considerable experience and knowledge of industry peak bodies will be valuable in implementing the reforms."

VBA Mail will provide more information in the coming months and a dedicated web page is under development at www.vba.vic.gov.au.

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